Just One More Bite


There’s a tough balance during tasting menus. You know there’s a LOT of food coming your way and you want to be able to try everything. Not be too full by course three. So you try not to finish every plate. Leave a few bites. Make it to dessert, by way of a few cocktails and glasses of wine.

Well, not this dish. At a recent dinner for food writers and bloggers, 1905 showed off its new brunch menu plus a few additions to its dinner menu. The above: Pan roasted shrimp with espelette, served over creamy coconut crab rice. OH the rice. Creamy and soft and nothing like the dried out brown rice I make at home. Will absolutely try adding some coconut milk to my next rice dish. Or I’ll just have to make it back to 1905.

Photo: Dakota Fine/byt

A+ for Avocado Usage


As if you couldn’t already tell, I seriously love cooking. It’s my favorite part of the day. Unfortunately, I have to go to work and am not able to cook all of my meals. That doesn’t mean, however, I won’t spend 15 minutes in the kitchen composing a salad, including a dressing, while in the office kitchen. But sometimes I just can’t get my act together and bring something to work.

In which case, I’ve found a new lunch spot: Pret A Manger. It’s a transplant, mostly to-go chain, from the UK. The sandwiches, salads and wraps are pre-made, but that doesn’t mean they should be disrespected. Plus, there is avocado in, like, everything.

Healthful Eats on the Move: Pret a Manger in D.C.

Photo: Pret

Social on Urbanspoon

And On Wednesday She Cooked Two Dinners


Monday night I went to Belmont‘s book club meeting where she served an African-inspired hearty, pureed, spicy (canned) squash soup. It was the color of puke but was absolutely wonderful. Perfect for a cold, winter night. All of the bookies are waiting for her to post the semi-elaborate recipe. I do know, however, that she spiked the soup with red wine and whiskey. And right there I vowed to myself to abuse 80’s liquor cabinet on behalf of our meals, kinda like this truffle amazingness. A selfless host indeed, Belmont took the time to shake up a blood orange vinaigrette and a salad full of fresh spinach and blood orange segments and the bitch doesn’t even like fruit. She’s a real crowd pleaser. Plus the from-scratch vanilla pudding.

So that was Monday.

Tuesday I attended a press dinner at the very new Inox. It was all the way out in Tysons so I was <this close> to not trekking out there. But, good lord, I’m glad I sacrificed some oil for the tasting dinner:

  • endive salad with blood orange (two salads with blood orange in two days!) paired with the creamiest nugget of bleu cheese – and I hate that usually funky shit;
  • red snapper in a lively ginger-lemongrass curry bouillon which also had beautiful indigo colored-basil seeds floating around – had a great, and surprising, kick;
  • lobster, glorious lobster;
  • pink slices of pan seared duck downed with bites of artichoke, fennel, olives and sun dried tomato;
  • crispy, meaty skate wing and a pudgy scallop;
  • elderflower soup which scared the shit out of me because it looked exactly like a jellyfish (did anyone else get forced to watch seven pounds??);
  • a chocolate bread pudding with – GET THIS – kalamata olive oil sherbert infused in the creaminess. First you receive traditional chocolate, but then it’s salty, and tangy, and briny and holy shit it tastes like an olive, but there is no olive, just the essence of an olive. It’s a real trick on your brain. A beautiful trick that I would gladly fall for again;
  • fruity, light, juicy pineapple dessert, but I couldn’t keep my tongue away from the chocolate-oliveness;
  • ended with petits fours;
  • lots of wine throughout served by the cockiest, driest sommelier I’ve ever encountered. His demeanor was actually refreshing compared to the normal ass kissing wine expert. He was still kinda a dick though. But only in the nicest possible way.

So that was Tuesday. And sorry, Amy, for taking the LONG way home.

Anyway, I was tired from two nights out, plus I’d been living with a cold for the past few days, and I was excited to get back into the kitchen. It’s funny how much I missed it there. And this is how I know I’m really crazy. You know how everyone is like, oh, I only want to make one meal, one meal in one pot, something easy on a week night. Well, I like cooking so much that I enjoy making 80 and I different dinners. They’re usually similar in scope, but contain different ingredients.

Here goes crazy.

Read More

Bobby McKeys

bobbymckeys.jpgI’ll tell you the long version.

Back in November, I did DAD GANSIE a favor and encouraged ES readers to vote for his bud, Julie, in this pig cooking contest. I started the post by mentioning that my parents know Julie through her piano playing husband, Nicky. Every Friday my parents head over to this tiny hotel and listen to Nicky and crew sing Sinatra and many other songs that only one would know if born before 1947.

Anyway, after I posted about the contest, PR girl Lisa emailed letting me know that I should tell my parents to get their asses down 95 and take them to the only dueling piano bar in the area.

Yes, that’s right. I convinced 80p, Liza, and ES friends Justin and Charley to sing and eat with me (and go all the way out to National Harbor) at Bobby McKey’s.

I had never been to a dueling piano bar, so I really didn’t know what to expect. I’ll let you read my thoughts in the article, but what I didn’t mention is that the show is actually kinda foul: for Margaritaville, the singer guides the audience to scream about blow jobs and infidelity.

Actually, I have a few more things that I didn’t mention, but that you should know.

Read More

Yo Yo Momoyama


I have a new found love: sushi.

So brand new that I have only eaten sushi 3 times in my life. Hated it the first time, and in typical 80p fashion, placed raw fish on the back-burner for 5 years. Why eat something I knew I hated?

Well a couple of weeks back, Gansie and I met a friend for happy hour at a pan-Asian, fusiony type place. I took my rightful place at the table by ordering some salmon teriyaki while the others checked off which rolls they liked. But then a funny thing happened, I tried one piece of yellowtail. Then another, and another, until I was asking if I could have the last piece.

This brings me to last week, when Gansie and I were planning for dinner. I happened to be reading JoeHoya’s blog, Capital Spice, and caught his review of a small, unknown sushi place on the Hill, Momoyama. If you think that this post will be a review, you are sorely mistaken. I know nothing about sushi — couldn’t tell you if I was eating a dollar roll, or Japan’s finest. I advise you all to read JoeHoya’s account for accuracy’s sake.

First things first, it took us 10 minutes to find this place, and we have a combined 16 years of DC experience (man, that statistic does NOT make me feel young). It’s on 2nd street, which looks like an alley and is about one block long. Momoyama itself is a row house that backs into an office building and faces a 30 foot high grey concrete wall. Sunset views are lacking here. But it adds to the impression that this is your little secret. Anyways,”review” after the jump.

Read More

Tuesdays for Cocktails


So for my last dining package, I decided to try the new restaurant/bar Commissary, from the group that also owns The Heights.  And you know how I feel about The Heights.  But, hey, the food looked okay, so I invited belmontmedina along to help me review their Happy Hour specials.

Well, I get there first and I’m greeted by these two women:

women: are you here for an “event” ??

me: no

women: the place is closed to the public until 8, but if you would like to talk to the hostess, she’s inside.

me: okay… thanks. [in my head: FUCK!]

So now I call BS and ask what I should do.  This is the ONLY night I have free to check out this place (because I’m a huge procrastinator, I was right up to my deadline.)  And I don’t want to pull the whole *I’m press, I need to get in there STAT* thing.  But, really, there’s no other choice.  Ugh.

Read More

Restaurant 3


Step away from the television sets—ESPN will still be there when you return to your favorite buffalo-sauce-stained bar stool. Clarendon has a new spot in town — Restaurant 3 — and it doesn’t pay homage to the Redskins. Say hello to tuna lollipops, ready to be dipped in wasabi cream and cooled off with bites of seaweed salad. Mero, Japanese sea bass, will also catch your attention: This silky fish, atop a creamy mixture of risotto and roasted acorn squash, will surely replace any memories of fried snacks.
For: Exchanging SportsCenter for sea bass.
Entrées: $15-$28. 703-524-4440. O, B, V.  2950 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington.

A version of this originally appeared in the Onion – AV Club / DC local edition

Restaurant 3 on Urbanspoon

« Previous
Next »